I don't think they should respawn, because that would lead to easy iron-farming which is bad. To prevent the death of the golem (or golems, if a village spawns with multiple "golem huts" (which shouldn't be too likely)), I would have the AI stay to village paths, only straying from them when a zombie is within attacking range (which only triggers when it's possible to walk there, I believe). It wouldn't stray more than some specified distance from the village, and it would then walk the same blocks on its return to the village. During the day it would stick to the hut and regen its health. If a golem was built inside this house instead of just anywhere, it'd be one of these golems tied to the village, which the game already has code to support since player-made golems are actually different from naturally spawning ones.
Why is iron being reasonably renewable bad? I can see why Iron Golems shouldn't be the ideal source, but iron has a lot of uses, so making it renewable is more or less needed to prevent it from needing awful amounts of mining. Plus, making the villagers actually build them would kill normal farms off anyways, without the side effect of causing villages form going defenseless if their golems die (Which, assuming that there's only 1 golem and that there's a zombie siege or a skeleton spawns somewhere the golem can't reach, is possible. In the first case, higher regional difficulty would make it more likely, while in the latter, unless it happens when it's nearly dawn, the golem most likely dies).
Well I am about to remove the villager robes thing from the post since everybody thinks it's such a terrible idea. Anyone want to discourage me from doing this before I do it?
You should try to think of an unique use for villager robes first before removing them. Some uses could be crafting decoys that lure zombies and that can be upgraded with meat to make it more effective at luring them, which could be useful in traps, as the decoys would be easier to set up than using villagers.
Yeah, i think so. They are clearly stupid and you are superior.
Exploiting in some cases can be charming.
Do Villagers have to be so dumb that turning into zombies actually improves their intelligence? Right now, it's almost a miracle that they even managed to make a village with ANY lightning. Even the other passive mobs seem more intelligent at times.
Does anyone have any ideas for making villagers better that I haven't put in the post? It's kind of small right now, so I'd be more than happy to include your idea(s).
Also, to AMPPL50:
What exactly did you mean by "dressing?" You said adding extra dirt, but if you're talking about like how it is now, where it will place dirt or cobblestone under the houses, than that is both already in the game and not a solution. If you are talking about making terrain generate over it, I think that is a little overcomplicated. I think it would be a lot easier and more efficient if the game just found a place with flat ground. It really wouldn't be that hard, considering villages spawn in plains, savannas, deserts, and spruce forests.
By "dressing", I mean that it could cover the pillar with dirt in a way that makes it look a bit like a hill instead of a pillar.
Another possibility is that the entire village overwrites the terrain, and instead it can "dig" through terrain so that villages don't follow the terrain so closely and instead look like the terrain was modified to accomodate the village.
More reasonable house requirements would be very good. I think AFK Fish farms should be stopped, so I didn't want the fisherman villager to become another source of AFK Fish Farming. I don't think the player should be able to steal items from villagers when they are harvesting things, so what if the item was instantly picked up by the villager?
I think nitwits should do something. I like your idea of them picking up items and placing them in chests; that would add more depth to them and make it feel like they are a part of the town.
I think village generation should look for flat terrain. When the non-flat parts are just filled in, it looks really bad. Have you seen what happens most of the time when a Woodland Mansion spawns? It's not pretty.
Are you for iron farming or against it? I couldn't tell from your post.
Making Fishermen pick the fish up instantly would be good enough.
If it looks for flat terrain, villages will struggle to spawn in some biomes, and filling the non-flat parts can be made to look better if they also come with some "dressing", such as dirt placed so it looks like a building on an artificial hill rather than a on a big boulder.
As for iron farming, it is that I don't think it can be stopped. Players will just find other ways to farm it. The only way to be unable to farm it is to make it have no renewable sources, which, considering it's many uses, probably is in itself a bit of a bad idea.
The only thing I don't quite like is villagers having to actually build Iron Golems, as that would really force players to make other iron farm designs (If they place the blocks, something like "Remove 1 of the Iron Blocks to prevent the Iron Golem from spawning" could actually make iron farming more profitable), and silverfish would provide a rather bad source (Althrough making them drop Iron Nuggets could be done as well). Then again, that is just nitpicking.
As for changing villager breeding, it would be better if they could breed like they do now (In that they do not "wait" for an event, and merely need food or to be traded with), but the pair of villagers shouldn't breed on the spot and instead should go to an empty house if possible.
Giving fisherman villagers pick-up priority wouldn't stop fish farming, althrough that would make them less of an automatic farming machine.
In terms of making villagers stop being dumber than zombies, another change could be to make them have more sensible house requirements, rather than thinking that a door with a block of dirt behind counts as a "house".
Finally, Nitwits are supposed to be like the "village idiots". They're should act like it. A way to reflect this is to make them be targeted with a pretty low priority by Zombies, making them keep the old AI, and, in a rather useful way, making them pick up dropped items in/close to the house, and then placing them in nearby chests, which could be added on top of your suggestion.
Village generation should, rather than looking for relatively flat terrain, affect the terrain by doing things such as spawning villages on top of cobblestone "blocks" and alter the terrain in them rather than how they currently follow the terrain VERY closely.